The city is covered in fiery foliage

Amsterdam canals autumn

Home to more than 400,000 trees, Amsterdam is one of the leafiest cities in Europe. In autumn, the greenery turns red, yellow and orange, making it the perfect time to enjoy leisurely strolls through the parks or along the historic canals, camera in hand. Don’t miss the sound of fallen leaves crunching under your feet or the site of them floating along the waterways.

You can dance, dance, dance

Amsterdam Dance Event

Each October, Amsterdam becomes the world’s dance capital when thousands of DJs, music fans and industry leaders arrive for ADE. Also known as Amsterdam Dance Event, this annual five-day gathering takes place in more than 100 venues and includes talks, classes, pop-up events and of course, parties that pulse all night long. 

Apple pie and hot chocomel

Amsterdam Dutch apple pie Hegeraad, Marie-Charlotte Pezé

When the warm weather disappears, head to a traditional brown bar for a slice of apple pie (topped with whipped cream) and a glass of piping hot Chocomel, an addictive Dutch favourite. Some popular destinations for these delicacies include PapeneilandWinkel 43 and Café Marcella. Craving more cold weather comfort food? Browse this list of must-try dishes.

Cultural season is in full swing

Peter Hilz

In autumn, Amsterdam is filled with cultural activities of every kind. Bands perform at venues around the city, touring musicals and plays stop by and museums host major exhibitions as people escape the chill and head indoors for entertainment. Review the cultural agenda to see what’s on and start making plans. 

Explore museums in the moonlight

Amsterdam museum night

Every November, Museum Night welcomes guests into the city’s most famous institutions after dark. Put on a warm coat, jump on your bike and ride from museum to museum as you enjoy special events and surprises at more than 50 locations. There are concerts, workshops, performances and exclusive tours along with enough food and drink to keep you going. Please remember that tickets can only be purchased through Dutch bank accounts, so consider asking your hotel to buy one on your behalf.

The skies look like a 17th-century painting

Prinseneiland woonboot en gracht Amsterdam

When the soft autumn sun pours over the skies of Amsterdam and illuminates the clouds, the city looks like a masterpiece from the 17th-century, complete with brush strokes. Photographs can never do this stunning natural beauty justice, so put on a snuggly sweater and go for a walk to see it for yourself.

Play with the ghosts, ghouls and goblins on Halloween

Amsterdam Spook Halloween party

It’s creepy and it’s kooky, mysterious and spooky! Amsterdam is a fantastic place to celebrate Halloween, so start working on your costume and check out the many parties and celebrations taking place throughout the city. You’ll only look like a freak if you’re not already dressed as one, so go wild. 

There’s a film festival for everyone

Autumn is film festival season in Amsterdam and there’s something for everyone, whether you like quirky indies, epic dramas from afar or flicks you can watch with the kids. From KLIK’s celebration of all things animated to the thought-provoking movies at the International Documentary Film Festival (IDFA), you’ll find it on the big screen from September to November.

You can race through the middle of the Rijksmuseum

TCS Amsterdam Marathon Foto: Wooning

The TCS Amsterdam Marathon is one of the world’s greatest, taking runners on a journey past windmills, stately homes and the Amstel River. It also winds through a tunnel that goes under the Rijksmuseum, bringing participants into the heart of the city. If you’re not ready to join the race, soak up the excitement as a spectator.

Sinterklaas is coming to town

Amsterdam Saint Nicholas Sinterklaas, Ada Nieuwendijk

Don’t be naughty in autumn – that’s when Sinterklaas arrives with treats for good girls and boys! The Dutch version of Santa sails into town every November on a boat from Spain before leading a parade that attracts over 400,000 pepernoten-munching spectators. Wondering what the difference is between the two jolly men in red? Read our guide to find out.